Now that summer vacation is here, kids are out of their routines in many areas. Unfortunately, taking care of their teeth and general oral health often takes a back seat to all the other fun things going on over the summer. Simply being at home more hours and having unstructured time can lead to consuming more foods and drinks filled with sugar. It’s especially important to remain firm about limiting snacks and to plan for those times you’re away from home. Watching baseball all day, for example, will lead to several trips to the snack bar unless you pack food and bring it with you.

Make Fruits and Vegetables Readily Available

You already know that fruits and vegetables are healthy, but you might not have considered how they benefit the teeth. Vegetables with a high water content, such as cucumbers, melons, and pears, are naturally low in sugar. They also require a lot of chewing, which helps to keep the mouth clean. Be aware that some fruits have a high sugar content, including bananas and any type of dried fruit. Your child should try to brush his or her teeth as soon as possible after eating sugary fruit for a snack.

Help Your Child Stick with a Brushing and Flossing Routine

The school year comes with a lot of routine, so it’s easier to remember to brush and floss teeth at least twice a day. Between vacations, parties, sporting events, and other summer fun, it’s easy to forget to do this once a day let alone twice. No matter where you are, set a time for your son or daughter to brush and floss. Be sure to stick to this time as closely as possible and to supervise your kids if necessary. Things will naturally come up to disrupt the schedule but coming back to it every time will help to reinforce its importance.

It may be tempting to give in when your child resists brushing and flossing, especially if he or she still has mostly baby teeth. We urge you to remain firm in this requirement no matter what your child’s age. If primary teeth become badly decayed, they may need to be extracted.

Don’t Forget to Visit Hanson Dental!

If your child’s preventive bi-annual appointment falls in the summer, be sure to keep the appointment. We make visiting the dentist special for kids! With a child-friendly room dedicated  to help eliminate fear, a TV/DVD in the ceiling, kid-friendly fluoride treatments, and digital x-rays (90% less radiation!), kids will forget they’re in a medical facility! We also recommend that you schedule back-to-school exams as early as possible before school starts to ensure you get your preferred time slot. If you would like more dental health tips for your child this summer or wish to schedule an appointment, please contact Hanson Dental in Buffalo, Minnesota at 763-682-9796.

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